Banking On A Techies' Banker

Hedge-fund manager Richard Bookbinder is all for market volatility. "I like unclear markets where most investors are confused," says the head of Bookbinder Capital Management. "It creates more inefficiencies--and opportunities," he adds. Take one of his current picks, Silicon Valley Bancshares (SIVB). Analysts' consensus rating on the stock is a hold, partly due to higher-interest-rate fears. But Bookbinder has been snapping up shares. He regards the company as more of a technology play: Its Silicon Valley Bank subsidiary serves emerging and middle-market companies that are involved mainly in technology and life sciences. With its regional banking offices in Northern and Southern California, Silicon's assets have grown from $2.6 billion in 1997 to an estimated $4.5 billion this year.

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